Naked as the day he was born

Flicking through the local newspapers in Venice last week I came across an article that caught my attention. I read it, and then I read it again to be sure I’d understood correctly.

A gentleman from Hungary had driven south through Austria and Slovenia bound for the beaches of Italy. He arrived on the coast, just to the east of Venice at a small town called Cavallino, popular with outdoors types. He’d parked his camper van in the morning and headed eagerly for the beach. When he reached the sand, the 64 year old, for reasons best known to himself decided to strip naked and parade up and down the coast dressed in, what the Italians rather charmingly call, ‘costume adamitico’. He was spotted on the beach at Cavallino and then later at the neighbouring community of Punta Sabbione.

It wasn’t until around 4 pm that afternoon that the gentleman in his birthday suit was actually apprehended by the local police officers, it had taken them six hours to reach the scene of the crime.  He was arrested, taken to the local police station and given a Euros € 10,000 fine. The Italians take a very dim view of public nakedness, it is simply not tolerated. The only question I have in my mind is, why on earth did it take the local police all day to locate the perpetrator and remove him from the public domain. After all he was very easy to spot. I can only assume they were too busy drinking coffee in the local bar. Or perhaps conducting random searches on attractive young women driving Fiat 500s.

Nevertheless the story made me smile and I felt a little sorry for the gentleman from Hungary who probably just wanted to feel the cooling breezes of the Adriatic caressing his aching limbs.  In fact, I am eternally grateful to him because I am now familiar with a new and delightful Italian term ‘in costume adamitico’ meaning literally ‘wearing Adam’s outfit’ in other words ‘nothing’. The Italian equivalent of ‘birthday suit’. How poetic!

Buona Giornata!


  • Having failed to find a humorous photo, ideally in black and white, of a gentleman on the beach, wearing his ‘costume adamitico’ I had the bright idea of using Antony Gormley’s naked man statues, distributed on the beach at Crosby, Liverpool. Thank you to Antony Gormley.
  • Funnily enough I’ve written about the Gormley statues at Crosby Beach. Here’s the link: Liverpool – where land meets sea
  • I strongly recommend a visit to Crosby, near Liverpool to see the Gormley statues. It’s fascinating to see how visitors interact with these life size casts.
  • As Carl Hiaasen, the crazy novelist from Florida maintains, when it comes to writing novels,  you never have to make it up. It just happens in real life. He should know he’s lived in Florida for many years. As a long time reporter for the Miami Herald he has seen it all! He claims that everything he writes about is based on a true story that appeared in his paper over a period of about 25 years.
  • Hiaasen’s novels are hilarious, full of extreme characters, corruption and disregard for the natural environment. I’d strongly recommend his books – ‘Stormy Weather’ is a personal favourite.
  • As the old saying goes ‘ there’s nowt funnier than folk’….
  • To read more tales from ‘The Educated Traveller’ visit
  • For tailor-made travel in Europe check out:
  • Enjoy!
  • May 2018

4 thoughts on “Naked as the day he was born

  1. Love, love, love Carl Hiassen and so glad you’ve given him a plug.
    Also, when next in the UK and if anywhere near the S.E. pop into Winchester Cathedral to see the Gormley statues there in the crypt. They too, touch water when the crypt gets flooded.


    1. I have been a fan of Hiaasen for about ten years now – I love his crazy, outlandish characters. Particularly the senator who tied himself to the centre point of a suspension bridge to experience the eye of a hurricane!


  2. Spot on, once again, Janet! An entertaining write-up and an excellent account! Thank you!
    I particularly enjoyed your assumptions as to why it might have taken so long for the Italian Police to make the arrest – sipping cappucinos and conducting random searches on attractive young women driving Fiat 500s.were definitely the most probable reasons, along with wolfing down some pre-siesta salamis and Prosecco or trying on their latest Ray-bans! But a fine of TEN THOUSAND EUROS? Poor bloke! I reckon that must have set back Hungarian-Italian relations a few hundred years to the days of the Roman-Hungarian Empire…..?!

    Anyway, keep up these excellent blogs, which regularly keep your readers interested, entertained and informed.


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